“Bahay para sa iyo, Nanay”

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Nanay Fe (middle) with son Ron, and daughter Jofe.

MAY 2017: It’s a month to remember and the second Sunday was the day when Nanay Fe, 59, and from Cebu, was greeted with a ‘happy mother’s day’ and gifted with an early Pamaskong regalo when she comes home for good this Christmas.

Naaalala pa niya ang sinabi ng anak na lalaki, “Nay, happy mother’s day. We love you. Pag-uwi mo ngayong Pasko, may regalo kami sa iyo. May bahay ka na. Bahay para sa iyo, ‘nay. Kami naman ang bubuhay sa iyo.”

It brought her tears of joy. She did not expect that her children would be giving her a house that she can call her own, situated in Lapu-Lapu City.

And she is excited to live in her house, but most importantly she is looking forward to be with her children to rediscover and recapture finally the ‘home’ she was
dreaming of for so long, including the joy of being a ‘lola’ in the near future.

Nanay Fe first came to Hong Kong in August 1991 and at the time, her son Ron was just nine years old, and daughter Jofe was only five.

Working overseas was a better choice than working at a day-care health center in Cebu dahil mas mataas ang sahod.

Inisip niya na mas maayos niyang matutustusan ang mga anak, lalo na ang pag-aaral ng mga bata.

Sabi niya “Ang pangarap ko ay mapagtapos ko sila sa college. Gagawin ko ang lahat para sa kanilang kinabukasan. Masakit man na iwanan sila sa murang edad, ang gagawin ko ay para sa kanilang buhay”.

She left the children in the care of her sister-in-law, who looked after them diligently and very kindly throughout the years she was working overseas. It was a blessing to see them grow and mature in the spirit of love and positive surrounding.

Kaya ang laking pasasalamat niya sa Maykapal nang makapagtapos ng kurso ang dalawa noong 2006, si Ron sa kursong B.S. Electronics and Communications
Engineering sa Cebu Institute of Technology at si Jofe sa kursong B.S. Pharmacy sa University of San Carlos.

Proud Nanay Fe was there to grace the momentous occasions. Her children are now both working professionals in their chosen careers in Cebu City.

Working abroad was not easy for Fe. Kahit mahirap ang trabaho, kahit kung minsan hindi makatulog at kahit maraming pagsubok, kinaya niya ang lahat.

Sabi niya “iniisip ko lang na ang sakripisyo ko ay para sa mga anak ko. Tiyaga, pananalig sa Diyos, respeto at pang-unawa sa amo, mapagpasensya…eto ang
ginawa ko kaya naging maayos naman ang trabaho ko dito sa mga naging amo ko. Nagpapasalamat ako at naging daan ito para mas tumagal ako sa employer
ko since 1997.”

When Fe comes home for good this Christmas, it would be her final ‘adieu’ to her kind and understanding employer of 20 years, Mrs. Veronica Chan, whom she served so diligently. She let Fe go on longer annual holidays so she could spend more time with her children.

To Veronica, Fe is ‘an angel from heaven’, the description she used when she was asked by their local community in 2005 to write something about their helper.

Because of that, Fe was awarded by the Hong Kong government as ‘best home caretaker’ and was given a trophy and a certificate of recognition for a job well done, in a ceremony held at the Sheungwan Civic Centre.

Mahirap man kay Fe na iwanan ang pamilya na tinuring na niyang kapamilya dito sa Hong Kong, ito na rin ang tamang panahon na umuwi siya para sa kanyang dalawang anak na tunay niyang ‘angels from heaven’.

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